Zak Washington's Guide to England - Title graphic.


title graphic with words ' Lesson Ten'
British culture: vintage Ford Corsair car 1964.

British culture: Vintage 1964 Ford Corsair car.

Zak Washington outside a Berwick Street nightclub in Soho, London.

ZakWashington, the corrupt English teacher, is too lazy to work at the language school, so he is taking his group of students to visit a ‘cultural’ place of interest. Today we are going to…..


ZakWashington logo (photo playing the guitar with kitsh 1950s graphic)


Marriage certificate graphic with discussion points for EFL classes about entertainment
Photo of Vintage postcard.




STUDENT A: You are Beryl an agony aunt. 

STUDENT B: You are Ahmet

STUDENT C: You are Ahmet's wife


Graphic with English language learners' communication activity.
Graphic with English language learners' communication activity

Zak Washington's English Adventure story - English language learning programme - Title graphic.



Learn English with ZakWashington audio listening exercise for students of English.

Video tutorial graphic with old vintage tv and antenna



ZAK WASHINGTON: A very good evening to you students from Soho! Look around and tell us what it looks like Ahmet.

AHMET: This is my favourite part of town because you can see people of every nationality. There are all sorts of interesting and colourful pubs and places. That’s a biker’s pub. That pub is always full of yuppies (SP: pijo IT: fighettini). There is a gay pub. There are dozens (SP: docenas IT: dozzine) of night-clubs, shows, piano bars, and strip clubs too.


ZAK WASHINGTON: Here we are in the Royal Revue Bar in Soho.

SOPHIE: This is not my style at all. What are you thinking about in this filthy, disgusting (SP: asqueroso IT: schifosoplace?

ZAK WASHINGTON: Disgusting it may be, but this is a linguistic gold mine (SP: mina de oro IT: miniera d'oro)! Learning a language is not always good clean fun. The Royal Revue Bar offers the perfect opportunity to to put your language skills into practice and make an in-depth (SP: a fondo IT: profondostudy into our beautiful English language....

AHMET: And make an in-depth study into those beautiful girls!

ZAK WASHINGTON: Ali, how is your headache (SP: dolor de cabeza IT: mal di testa)?


ALI: þÿἶﻵﭨﭨйↇ چ٭⅏₳æ₻⁇ Traditional English refreshment! (Hic!)

AHMET: There are many beautiful women. What should I do?

ZAK WASHINGTON: You need a chat-up line.

AHMET: Oh, the telephone line?

ZAK WASHINGTON: No, a chat-up line. A comical, fun and clever phrase for when you meet someone you like. Watch me in action… Hello darling, haven’t we met before?

REDHEADED WOMAN: Yes we have. I work in the Clinic for Sexually Transmitted Diseases.


AHMET: (Going over to a beautiful blond woman at the bar).....You really must tell me your name, because last night when I dreamt about you, I could only call you baby!

BLOND GIRL: Ahh, clear off, you creep [1]!


ZAK WASHINGTON: Can I buy you a drink? …or would you just like the money?


TICKET INSPECTOR: (Going over to a beautiful blond woman at the bar) Would you like to be coming to my house for eating pizza and making the love?

BLOND: No, I would not!

TICKET INSPECTOR: Why not? Are you not liking the pizza? Correct him!



AHMET: I’m new in this town. I was wondering if you could tell me the way to… your place?

RED-HEADED GIRL: Ahh, clear off (SP: véte, lárgate IT: vai via, vafanculo), will you?


ZAK WASHINGTON: Hi. I’ve… lost my…. err…pet puppy (SP: cachorro IT: cucciolo)…. Will you help me look for it? I think it went into that cheap hotel over there.

BLACK-HAIRED GIRL: Clear off or I’ll go and get my boyfriend!

BIG HAIRY BOYFRIEND: Oi! Who are you talking to? That’s my girlfriend….

(Typical English fight scene.)



GIOVANNI: Hi! What have you guys [2] been up to?

SOPHIE: Where have you been?

GIOVANNI: A pickpocket robbed me and stole my wallet. I’ve been back to the police station to report the theft.

SOPHIE: What did the police say?



[1] Creep (SP: desgraciado IT: pirla) (noun, colloq.) another insult. This time used to describe someone who is too nice, probably because that person wants  something. It is also commonly used by women to describe men who they find unpleasant or unattractive, and who keep annoying them. ‘This guy is such a creep. He won’t leave me alone, and keeps leaving me these stupid messages.’ This is commonly used in English schools to talk about the student who always tries to make themselves popular with the teacher, by being too nice. To creep up to someone. (verb). ‘Look at Jenkins! He’s creeping up to teacher again.

[2] Guys (SP: chicos, chavales IT: ragazzi) (£) a group of men ($) traditionally meant a group of men, but now can apply to women only, or men and women together.


Who is Giovanni? What happened to him in chapter six? Who is Desk Sergeant Reynolds?

Essential English vocabulary. British slang words and phrases part 8. Infographic chart by Language Unlimited
section title graphic with the words: 10.3 Grammar - Reported Speech

You are going to study a text that is written in reported speech. Notice the way the tenses change in English when you tell someone about something that has been said. ‘I am from Holland,’ says the Dutchman to you. You say, ‘He said that he was from Holland.’ First discuss the grammar rules for putting sentences into reported speech. Which tenses change? What happens to modal auxiliary verbs in reported speech? Students of a lower level can complete the phrases below first.

PRESENT SIMPLE becomes......



PAST SIMPLE becomes.....

PAST PERFECT becomes.....


WILL becomes.....

CAN becomes....

MUST becomes.....

SHOULD becomes.....

Answer Key for Zak Washington's Guide to England. Free language course online. English language methodology.
ZakWashington, English teacher, stood in a rainy street in Soho (still from Learn English with ZakWashington video)
ZakWashington outside Soho nightclub with two gay leathermen
section title graphic with the words: 10.4 Grammar - Reported Speech

Now get together with a partner, and write the exact words of the dialogue that were spoken between Giovanni and Desk Sergeant Reynolds, the policemen.

GIOVANNI: I went in to the police station to report (SP: denunciar IT: denunziarethat my wallet had been stolen, and Desk Sergeant Reynolds and his colleague started laughing, and asked me where my transvestite boyfriend was. I told them that he wasn’t my boyfriend. Then I told them that people who are transvestites are often normal, and that just because a man dresses up as a woman doesn’t automatically mean that he’s weird [1]. I said that he may have been a very typical person. They told me to shut up (SP: callar IT: stare 'zittaand get to the point (SP: ir al grano IT: arrivare al punto).

Then they asked me again if I’d seen him, and I said that I didn’t know where he had gone, and that was why I had come here. They told me that they needed to fill out (SP: rellenar IT: compilarea report. They asked me what he was called, and I told them that he’s called Dave. Then they asked me what gender he was, if he was male or female, and I replied that I didn’t know. They asked me if I would make a description, and I replied that I would. So I told them that he had facial hair and could’ve grown a beard (SP: barbaby now to disguise (SP: disfrazar IT: travestirehimself.

Then they asked me what he had stolen from me, and asked if I could help them make a photo-fit identity picture on the computer, in order to be able to find him. Then they informed me that they wouldn’t be able to do it because the photo-fit programme was for a girl’s face, and the computer programme wouldn’t allow them to put facial hair on the picture. So they suggested that we use the men’s identi-kit programme, and that we should add long hair to the picture afterwards, to make the person seem (SP: parecer IT: assomigliarelike a woman. But then they announced that it couldn’t be done either, because on the men’s programme, you can’t put make-up on the criminal’s face. They them suggested that I draw a picture of Dave the pickpocket, as this would be better than nothing.

Finally, Desk Sergeant Reynolds said that it was going to be difficult to get my wallet and money back, as there is so much petty[2] crime in London, but that he would do everything that he could to help. He was very nice to me and even gave me his mobile phone number! I can’t think why!

When you have finished, compare your text with the rest of the group and try to reach a group verdict.  


[1] Weird (SP: raro, extraño IT: strano) (adj.) Strange, unusual, odd, peculiar, abnormal, freaky etc. A word that is loved by native English speakers, but seldom used by foreign students, mainly because they don’t understand how to pronounce it. It contains one of the more unusual vowel sounds. It should rhyme with here, beer, feared, beard etc. American youngsters turn it into a verb to weird someone out, which means to frighten, shock, or to make uncomfortable by strange behaviour. As they come from a country where just about everything is over-the-top, unusual and strange, it has become one of the most common verbs in modern use. Note also weirdo (noun) who is a person. This implies someone who is completely strange. Britain and the U.S. are full of them. ‘This weirdo got onto the bus, and sat down next to me. He started talking to me and was totally weirding me out.

[2] Petty (SP: menor, pequeño IT: minore(adj.) unimportant, trivial. Petty-crime (SP: delitos menores IT: reati minori) (noun) describes small, unimportant crime, such as pick-pocketing, shoplifting etc. Is commonly used as part of the adjective petty-minded (adj.) which describes a person who only thinks of small unimportant things instead of what is really important. If you need English for domestic arguments, then this is essential vocabulary. ‘I know I left the top off the toothpaste tube! Don’t be so petty-minded!’ ‘I’m not being petty, and while we are on the subject, can you try and lift the toilet seat up before…?’


ZakWashington, English teacher giving a lesson in a Soho nightclub
section title graphic with the words: 10.5 Grammar - Reported Speech

What are the verbs that were used to introduce the reported speech?

What’s the difference between them?

How are imperatives reported? (Positive and negative).

answer button graphic with link to answer key
Graphic for ZakWashington EFL TEFL exercise for students of English to learn 'reported speech'
answer button graphic with link to answer key
ZakWashington, English teacher, teaching students chat-up lines
Learn English with Zak Washington - English language logo by Language Unlimited
section title graphic with the words: 10.7 Grammar - Reported Speech

CLASS ACTIVITY Choose a text, but instead of reading it directly, read it as reported speech, as if you are telling someone else about what was said.

section title graphic with the words: 10.8 Grammar - Reported Speech

CLASS ACTIVITY Next time you go out with your friends. Come back to class and report what happened and what was said. 

section title graphic with the words: 10.9 Grammar - Reported Speech

Let’s get saucy! Number the following adjectives in order of strength. First is the lightest.

graphic with illustration of theatre tickets with English learner vocabulary adjectives printed on top.

Most of the above have NOUNS derived from them. What are they?

section title graphic with the words: 10.10 Grammar - Adjectives

Which adjectives from the above list would best describe the following?  

a. ‘The Benny Hill Show (1970s comedy show with high sexual content) is ................... and ....................... and should be taken off the TV.’

b. ‘The ....................... scandal of the president and one of his female assistants.’

c. ‘Using a phrasal verb with a double meaning is ........................ and childish, and I won’t tolerate it.’

d. ‘A ........................ catholic girl who gets embarrassed when someone mentions the word ‘procreation’.

e. ‘He is a ................. conservative politician and likes rubber masks, sadomasochism, whips[1] etc.’

f. ‘My son! I have found several ..................... magazines under your bed, and you will be punished.’

g. ‘My boyfriend watches those ........................ films like Emmanuel, that are not very strong, but he can’t stand the................. ones that are very graphic.’

i. ‘Those postcards that they sell in London, with the .................. jokes, are not very funny.’

k. In the rugby club they were singing a really, really ................... song about a policewoman and a root vegetable.

l. My boyfriend likes me to dress up in an England football shirt. It’s a bit ........................ Don’t you think?

[1] Whip (SP: latigo IT: frusta(noun) a long thin instrument or chord, that is used for punishment.

answer button graphic with link to exercise answer key
Infographic - ENGLISH LANGUAGE STUDENT SPEAKING PRACTICE ACTIVITY: Discussion about mature entertainment industry
English teacher ZakWashington (alias Miki Pannell) playing guitar in a Soho street, London


LEARN ENGLISH WITH ZAK WASHINGTON audio listening exercise for students of English.

ZakWashington vintage Soho nightclub poster advertising a West End show
Zak Washington's English Adventure story - English language learning programme - Title graphic.




ANNOUNCER: Ladies and gentlemen!!! Welcome to the Royal Revue Bar! Tonight we have a packed programme of delights for you, including a visit from Britain’s most popular aristocrat... Lady Forbsworth!!!

THE CROWD: (Singing in unison) ¯ Lady Forbsworth!!! Lady Forbsworth!!! ¯

ANNOUNCER: Ladies and gentlemen!!! Your attention please!! We have, for your very special pleasure, the moment you’ve all been waiting for!... All the way from the London Borough of Knightsbridge (SP: zona de pijos de Londres IT: zona di fighetti di Londra)! The world’s most beautiful!... The most gorgeous (SP: preciosa IT: bellissima)! ....The most desirable! ....

THE CROWD: (Yelling (SP: gritar, chillar IT: urlare)in unison hysterically) ¯ Lady Forbsworth!!! Lady Forbsworth!!! ¯



LADY FORBSWORTH: (Walking slowly out onto the stage (SP: escenario IT: palco). She is dressed as an elegant Victorian lady with an enormous dress, a giant hat covered in fruit, and has a fan[1] in her hand. She has a cigarette in a cigarette holder in the other hand, and is blowing smoke slowly into the air below the bright lights of the stage. In the background the music of Shirley Bassey’s ‘Big Spender’[2] is playing. The crowd is going wild.)

So… boys… did you miss [3] me?

THE CROWD: Yes, we did!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Have you been good little boys?

THE CROWD: Yes, we have!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Do you deserve the royal treatment?

THE CROWD: Yes, we do!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Oh, my my, it’s awfully hot in here and this corset[4] is so tight… Do you mind if I take it off?

THE CROWD: No, we don’t!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Have you been waiting long for me boys?

THE CROWD: Yes, we have!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Do you think I’m looking pretty tonight?

THE CROWD: Yes, we do!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Could you get me a gin and tonic from the bar?

THE CROWD: Yes, we could!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Can you put a little ice in it too?

THE CROWD: Yes, we can!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Are you going to watch me while I slip into something comfortable?

THE CROWD: Yes, we are!!


LADY FORBSWORTH: These Victorian dresses are very difficult to remove (SP: quitar IT: togliere)… Will you help me?

THE CROWD: Yes, we will!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Will you all close your eyes for a moment while I get this off?

THE CROWD: Yes, we will!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: You wouldn’t want me to leave this on, would you?

THE CROWD: No, we wouldn’t!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Would you undo this button here for me?

THE CROWD: Yes, we would!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Do you want me to leave the corset on?

THE CROWD: No, we don’t!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Would you like it if I went home early now before I’ve finished?

THE CROWD: No, we wouldn’t!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Don’t you, the boys, go home earlier either.

THE CROWD: No. we won’t!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: You wouldn’t like that now, would you?

THE CROWD: No, we wouldn’t!!

LADY FORBSWORTH: Do you think you are going to like the rest of the show?

THE CROWD: Yes, we think so!!


[1] Fan (SP: abanico IT: ventaglio(noun) an instrument held in the hand, and moved to produce a current of air in the face. Also the name, given to the modern electric version, the ventilator.

[2] ‘Big spender’ classic showbiz striptease song, in the same vein as Tom Jones’ ‘You can leave your hat on.’

[3] To miss (SP: echar de menos IT: mancarehas several meanings. The most important is ‘to remember with desire or nostalgia, a person, place or thing that is now no longer here now’. ‘I miss my mother’s cooking, the sun, and not having to work. I hate England!’  The other main meaning is ‘to not be able to arrive in time, or to not arrive at all’. ‘I missed the last bus, and consequently, missed the show too.’ Speakers of romance languages should realise that this differs completely from to lose, in which case you are the owner of something. Only an irresponsible drunken bus driver could say ‘I’ve lost the bus’. If you don’t get to the bus stop in time, you would say ‘I’ve missed the bus.’ Students should try and remember that if  the little German student  Gertrude doesn’t arrive at school, you say ‘She’s not here,’ or ‘She’s absent,’ but not ‘She’s missing. (And definitely not ‘She’s missing in action.’)  If you say this your English teacher will probably go and phone the police, because she has disappeared, and nobody knows where she is.

[4] Corset (SP: corsé IT: corsettoA special type of clothing used by women to make them look thinner. Especially fashionable in the nineteenth century, before lypo-suction was invented.

British culture photo: Soho club. Berwick street. London nightspot.

graphic of a vintage clapper-board with the ZakWashington logo


Students now take the role of the crowd and answer Lady Forbsworth’s questions with short answers like those above. The female student in the room with the nicest voice will play the role of Lady Forbsworth. There is no time for hesitation.

LADY FORBSWORTH: Have you been waiting long for me boys? Yes, ………!

Do you think that I’m looking pretty tonight? Yes, ………!

Could you get me a gin and tonic from the bar?

Can you put a little ice in it too?

Are you going to watch me while I slip into something more comfortable[6]?

These Victorian dresses are very difficult to remove[7]. Will you help me?

Will you all close your eyes for a moment while I get out of this?

You don’t want me to leave this on, do you?

Would you undo this button here for me?

Do you want me to leave the corset on?

Would you like it if I went home now, before I’ve finished?

Don’t you boys go home early either, eh?

You wouldn’t like that now, would you?

Do you think you’re going to enjoy the rest of the show?

Ooh! It’s still awfully [8] hot in here, ain’t it?


[6] Comfortable (SP: IT: comodo) (adj.)  cosy, soft, pleasant to sit on etc. But how many syllables does it have. Four? Wrong. It has three. Vegetable also has three. Chocolate has two. 

[7] (to) remove (SP: quitar IT: togliereto take off (clothes), to take away.

[8] Awfully (SP: muy, muchísimo IT: terribilmente(adverb) meaning ‘really’ or ‘very’. Very good English or very snobby, depending on how you look at it. ‘They really are an awfully nice family. We get on awfully well with them, but I’m not sure if they’re rich enough to be friends of ours.’

answer button graphic which links to answer key page


spectacular union jack graphic with red pink and blue colours of ZakWashington with an English grammar explanation



Discuss the grammar with the other students.

Which question tags are used with positive sentences? With negatives? And imperatives? When does the intonation go up at the end of the sentence? When does it go down?


Which of the following is a real question that requires a real answer, and which is a normal sentence, that is made to sound a little bit more friendly? You haven’t got the time, have you? Oh, I forgot. You haven’t got a watch, have you?

Which would have rising intonation?


You must learn to recognise the auxiliary verb, and then use it in it’s opposite form.


Complete the following exercise with the appropriate question tag. More advanced students can do the exercise orally.

‘Click to Subscribe’ graphic of old TV with link to English language video tutorials channel


MARIA: ‘I bet that you haven’t seen a show like that in your life, ____________?

It was definitely one of the best shows that I’ve ever seen, ____________?

She’s a great dancer, __________?

There’s something really sensual about the way that she moves, ___________?

It was a really artistic show, ___________?

It was a real declaration of feminism, ______________?

It was like when Madonna did that ‘Girly Show’, ___________?

She wanted to say that she was the boss, that she was in control, _____________?

The way she made all those men in the audience look so foolish was clever, _______________?

I wish I had a personality like hers. I’m not that dominant, _____________?

I’m a much more quiet, passive personality, ____________?

These English women aren’t as bad-looking as everybody says, __________________?’

SOPHIE: ‘You talk a lot of rubbish (SP: chorradas IT: stupidaggine), ______________? Feminism?

She’s just a typical night-club dancer, _____________?

And the audience were no more than a bunch [1] of chauvinists, _____________?

That wasn’t art, ______________? 

It’s sexism, and exploitation (SP: explotación IT: sfruttamento), ______________?

You haven’t ever read any Germain Greer books, _______________?

MARIA: Who? She’s that romantic novelist (SP: novelista IT: romanziere), _______________?

I love it when the beautiful maid (SP: doncella IT: fanciullais seduced (SP: seducida IT: sedottaby the aristocratic prince, _____________?

SOPHIE: No, I do not! I don’t read that rubbish. Germain Greer was one of the greatest feminists that ever lived, _____________?

You’d learn a lot about women from books like hers, _______________?

You South American women could do with learning about fighting and defeating the masculine oppressor, ______________?

MARIA: Leave us alone [2], ______________?

You shouldn’t be so up-tight and take yourself so seriously, _____________?

Why do you bother [3] coming out?

You could have stayed at home with a copy of that book of yours, ‘Catholic Thoughts, Volume IV’, ____________?

Go and get yourself a drink, ____________? You never know, you might even enjoy yourself!

answer key graphic which connects to the answer page to the above exercise



[1] Bunch (SP: grupo IT: mazzo(noun) a highly useful way of describing a small group, or a small number of things together. ‘I’m going to visit Mary in hospital. What do you think that she’d  like? A bunch of grapes or a bunch of flowers?’

[2] Alone (SP: solo IT: da solo) (adj. after verb.) the meaning is ‘separate’ or ‘without any other around’. Lonely is the miserable way you feel in such a condition. My parents left me alone once for ages and I felt really lonely. Only three types of people ever use the word lonesome. 1. Cowboys in Western films. 2. Country and western singers. 3. Foreign students who haven’t learnt correct English usage. Lone (SP: unico IT: solitariois a literary adjective meaning ‘a single one’ and is put in front of a noun. A lone silver star danced across a crushed velvet sky.

[3] To bother (SP: molestar IT: da fastidioin this context the meaning is to go to the trouble of‘They didn’t even bother to say thank us for the meal!’  It is common in the negative. ‘I can’t be bothered to go out tonight, I ‘m too tired.’  In other uses the meaning is to annoy‘This horrible man keeps bothering me. He won’t leave me alone.’

Soho, London street scene
Image from a ZakWashington video with a double-decker bus, ticket inspector and Indian lady
Zak Washington at the clinic getting an injection



Do the same as above.

AHMET: Anja! You are a very talented woman, __________?

I always notice these things, ____________?

You are a very attractive woman, _____________?

You and I get on very well, ______________?

We’d make a great team, _____________?

You understand what I’m saying, ____________?

We’ve got a special chemistry, ______________?

I’ve seen the way that you look at me, ____________?

Let me buy you a drink, ____________?

Let’s go to the bar, _______________?

ANJA: What are you talking about? You’re drunk, ______________?

You wouldn’t say that type of thing, if you weren’t drunk, _____________?

You’re not my type at all, ___________?

You’ve just decided that you fancy me, ____________?

A minute ago you were chasing those English girls, _____________?

And then, when you didn’t get a result with them, you thought 'who could I chase after now’ _____________?

AHMET: No, it’s not like that, _______________?

I’ve fancied you ever since I met you, ________________?

Honestly. I’d do anything for you, _____________?

We have that special bit of magic between us, _____________?

It’d be a tragedy to lose something as beautiful as that, ______________?

ANJA: I’ve told you, ______________?

You’re not my type, __________________?

Look. Let’s just pretend that we’ve never had this conversation, _______________?

It’s starting to get embarrassing, ____________?

AHMET: Well, it doesn’t have to be a permanent thing,_____________?

I’m not asking you to marry me, _____________?

I don’t want to force you into a serious commitment, ______________?

We could just form a romantic liaison for a shorter period of time, _______________?

You know what I mean, _____________?


ANJA: You think I’m stupid, _____________?

You creep! You’re just trying to get me into bed, __________?

Go away, _____________? Go and annoy someone else!

ENGLISH LANGUAGE STUDENT SPEAKING PRACTICE ACTIVITY: Discussion about Stag Nights, Hen Nights and marriage celebrations
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Clickable link to next free Zak Washington English language online lesson of full course by Language Unlimited